North Texas Municipal Water District Implements Stage 3 Water Conservation Measures Effective June 1, 2013 - Action means use of landscape watering will be limited to once per week; Additional water management strategies will apply in Melissa

Following the direction of North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD), the City of Melissa will implement Stage 3 water conservation measures effective June 1. With this move, residential and business customers will be allowed to use automatic sprinkler and irrigation systems just once per week. Soaker and hand held hoses can be used on foundations, new shrubs and trees for up to two hours per day.

The following measures are already in place and will continue to be enforced under Stage 3:

• No outdoor watering with an irrigation system between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.

• No use of water that allows runoff or other water waste.

• No landscape watering during any form of precipitation.

The announcement comes following a vote by the city’s water supplier (NTMWD Board of Directors) to implement Stage 3 of the NTMWD Water Conservation and Drought Contingency and Water Emergency Response Plan. The board vote was prompted by the adverse impact on the NTMWD’s raw water supplies due to below average rainfall and the loss of 28 percent of NTMWD’s total raw water supply from Lake Texoma.

Both Lakes Lavon and Chapman, two key NTMWD reservoirs, are down almost eight feet below normal conservation levels. In addition, the district cannot draw water from Lake Texoma because of the zebra mussel infestation.

Within the Stage 3 water management strategies, the City of Melissa must take action to reduce water consumption by 10 percent.

"We urge our residents and businesses to fully comply with the Stage 3 water management strategies that will go into effect June 1st," said Melissa City Manager Jason Little. "Reducing our water use by 10 percent will help extend NTMWD’s water supplies during the summer months. In addition, the regional collective effort will be needed to avoid the need for NTMWD to implement Stage 4 and the associated restrictions."

While long term forecasts indicate below average rainfall this spring and summer, the NTMWD Board of Directors could re-consider Stage 3 conservation measures if weather patterns change and the Lake Lavon watershed receives significant rainfall.

Construction continues on a pipeline from Lake Texoma to the NTMWD water treatment plant in Wylie that will allow the district to resume pumping water from Texoma. However, the first phase of that project will not be completed until January 2014.

What you can do…

According to the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, A typical family uses 60–80 gallons of water per person per day. Luckily, there are many ways each of us can conserve and use water wisely each and every day. Here’s a sample of smart, simple choices courteous of WaterIQ that you can make whenever and wherever you use water — outdoors or indoors.

Outdoors

• Water your yard deeply (about one inch) and infrequently (about once a week).

• Water only before 10 a.m. and after 6 p.m. to minimize evaporation.

• If you use a sprinkler system, make sure you’re using it effectively and efficiently.

• Raise the lawnmower blade and cut grass to a height of three inches to shade the soil, which reduces evaporation and allows roots to grow deeper.

• Check outside spigots, pipes and hoses for leaks, and repair or replace as needed.

• Plant native plants to North Texas to reduce the amount of water your landscape requires.

Indoors

• Install low-flow toilets, shower heads and faucets throughout your house.

• Wash dishes in the dishwasher rather than by hand. Don’t waste water pre-rinsing dishes and run the dishwasher only with a full load.

• Invest in an energy-efficient clothes washer, adjust the water level to your load size or run the clothes washer only with a full load.

• Turn off the water while you shave, and rinse your razor in a plugged sink rather than under a running faucet.

• Turn off the faucet while brushing your teeth and washing your face or hands.

Additional information and links to other great resources on how you and your family can do your part to conserve water and at the same time save on your water bill can be found on the City of Melissa website at www.cityofmelissa.com.